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Pregnancy and Beyond: Book Reviews

Recently in a live video (see our facebook page) I poo pood What to Expect When Your Expecting! Yup that amazing multi million best international seller wasn’t for me! I found it sucked all the joy out of being pregnant and was so matter of fact! I was dissappointed reading it especially the first few chapters as it made out having a baby was a monotonous affair. Instead I read books like Pregnancy for Men by Mark Woods and combined it with pregancy apps like Ovia and Pregnancy plus. I did get other apps but these were by far my favourite as well as my NHS issued ready steady baby book.

Pregnancy for Men was such an awesome and informative book to read ad it made sure I was aware of what my oh was going through too. Because its very easy to lose sight of your partners’ emotions as they embark on this huge change too – though i do think they could change the title to pregnancy for partners lol?!

And ofcourse good old – internet is a gem and a disaster for information!

You might be thinking what? This lady has her head in the clouds! But I assure you I was very thorough during my pregnancy including learning when the intestines go into the stomach, how the heart and brain are formed, the three main Chromosome abnormalities that can cause certain conditions in your baby amongst other things. And ofcourse what a good old episotomy is – I was kindly informed by two fathers in the workplace what i could expect during my labour/birthing experience including that! As well as other details their wives wouldn’t want the world to know!

Other books I read in preparation of baby’s arrival included:

Gina Ford – The New Contented Little Baby Book

Steve Biddulph – Raising Boys (very good for emotional development – for both child and parents)

Brain Rules for Baby – also have a facebook page which I liked albeit the book is ok

Alvin Eden – Positive Parenting – my best book yet! Apart from anecdotes it takes you from birth to three years about what your child should be doing. Physical, Motor developments as well as social skills. Theres even a suggestion of toys and games to play with your child. There is parts discussing breastfeeding but I chose to ignore that bit! I am obviously still using this book today.

What books do you use/recommend and why?

I had scans at 6, 8, 12, 18, 20 and 34 weeks due to bleeding, routine, gender reveal and reduced movement.

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Stopping Co Sleeping: Before you start

I feel it necessary before we start to advise of our ethos: we don’t judge ever!

So before we receive any judgemental posts about Co Sleeping etc we don’t care for those opinions. 

We did what was right for our family in order to give us all peace of mind and we believe that’s what we’re all trying to do at the end of the day.

Now that’s been said: we will begin with our journey;

It was the night after having our little one an anxiety switch flicked inside me and I couldn’t put him to lie down in the bassinet next to my bed on the maternity ward. All the crying babies; the lady next door…we’re all too much for me to bare including the added pressure of not being able to feed my little one. So I propped us up in bed and held him all night. 

There was also the fact he coughed and choked whilst laying on his back that made me change my entire thinking about the advice of putting babies to sleep on their backs.

So on the second night of literally no sleep, I contacted the other half and said we were ready to come home.

His Moses basket was ready. But no matter what we did he wouldn’t settle in there. He cried grunted and griped all night. He had colic. He wasn’t doing well with the formula we were on either.

He was settled only if he lay on a pillow for this heightened my anxiety further as I was scared he’d die. SIDS is a huge worry for me as a loss in my extended family had already happened years ago.

So much so I was crying out in my sleep asking for the baby, scared if my oh took him away out of the room so I couldn’t hear him cry. He was so precious I turned into a nightmare of over protectiveness that at nearly 17 months is just about easing.

The nightmares were vivid and the fear was controlling my every waking moment.

We researched how to cosleep safely with a baby. No duvet near them (you’d be surprised how quickly you get used to a colder upper body), no pillows & sleep with an arm stretched out to prevent you rolling. My oh also began sleeping in the spare room to give us more space.

So in January we decided (after numerous earlier attempts) he’d be in his cot by 18 months… Crazy New Year Resolutions

Fast forward 5 months and I’d finally psyched myself up to do it: sleep separately from my son.

It’s been no easy feat, but we know he sleeps on his own at Nursery. So we thought we’d give it a try.

First night we tried we were unsuccessful whether he could sense my nervousness and then stress, whether it was because it was just me trying to do it without the presence of my other half – who knows but after an hour or more of tears and not settling we aborted. I remember this was a Saturday night.

Over the lifetime of our little one we have researched several sleep training methods but a key thing that’s stood out to us, one advises your child will not be ready to transition if they cry for three hours! Im not going to distress my kid for 3 hours! 

So we decided if he wouldn’t settle after an hour we’d abort! So we did.

But the night he decided to sleep in his cot we had one of his nursery teachers come over to babysit and put him to bed. And it worked! He was ill that night though so bad timing but from that night he has been in his bed so mid June 2017.

We stayed at night to read him several stories, I slept on the floor and we did the waiting til he fell asleep before walking out and gradual retreating until eventually we can just put him in and walk away and he falls asleep on his own. If he cries out we go in and we still use the video camera to check on him.

He also sleeps with a sleepyhead but like last night he can sleep without it too.

Overall having a little one sleep on their own is great for you getting time back for yourselves but at the same time you should so it at your own pace in your own way x

Please feel free to ask any questions 🙂

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Breastfeeding – Ending Our Journey: Day 4 

No more engorgement, barely anything in the breasts and definitely no pain.

I’ve done this without drugs nor any cabbage leaves (pukes!).

Speaking of puking … last night our little monkey did just that after having engorged himself on milk. It brings back memories of our disastrous bottle feeding days…

Not sure why we’ve ended back there but hopefully we can continue to move forward.

He’s not asking for booby anymore which makes me feel sad. And last night he woke up at 3 looking for milk for the first time. Although he has been getting up at 4 when we would also have a feed. Might have to have a sippy cup at the ready.

He’s headed to bed just fine albeit our bed. With cuddles until he closed his eyes. 

Fingers crossed as Night 5: it will be uneventful 

I will summarize my feelings about this process once it’s over btw x

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Sorry for being away…

We haven’t posted anything in the last fortnight as we recently suffered a bereavement in the family. Of course we will be back and we will try to post again very soon. So head on over to our Facebook page where you’ll see lots more useful and fun information.

Thank you for your continued support x

E

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Favourite Apps – Pregnancy

Apps I really liked during my pregnancy were:

Pregnancy + helps give you advice about your pregnancy and shows you week by week developments in baby growth – compares baby to food items. You can track appointments too and share the app with your partner. It also has shopping lists that help you prepare for baby’s arrival.

Con: it has in app purchases (go pro) in order to access all the features and once you have reached the end of your pregnancy (I had an early arrival) it’s hard to update – well for tired sleep deprived mummy

Ovia Pregnancy- amazing app! Same as above minus the shopping list and sharing with partner BUT once baby arrives it continues to show you how your little one is developing. I now have a year old child and still use this app. You can see how big baby is compared to household items, toys or animals lol 

Con:No email updates which is a shame because it’s such a good app.

BabyCentre – you have a Mummy forum where you can join you due date month group and share tidbits & get support, gives you updates on your pregnancy as well as carries on as your child develops. You get email updates.

Con: development part ends at one in the app although you still have access to the forums and get email updates.

Apps to avoid:

Bounty/ my diary – waste of space – not nearly as much information as above and you get inundated with spam emails about things to buy or a book club to join. Very annoying! They also get to you through Bounty Packs – offered at the hospitals and Boots and other retail outlets. They have little freebies in them…